"Whereas the centrality of femininity to nineteenth-century French fiction has been the focus of widespread critical attention, masculinity has, until recently, received little sustained treatment in either the literary or socio-historical domains. In this book, Nigel Harkness uses the fiction of George Sand (1804-1876), the pre-eminent woman writer of the period, to explore questions of masculinity as they pertain to the nineteenth-century French novel, and to map out new approaches to the study of literary masculinity. Drawing on contemporary theories of gender and narrative, Harkness reveals how Sands novels repeatedly focus on a nexus of language, masculinity and power, in which narrative is both a vehicle for the expression of manhood, and a site where masculinity is discursively performed. Masculinity is thus reconfigured in Sands fiction as an identity constituted as much through words as through actions. Analysis of the performances of masculinity staged in Sands novels opens onto an exploration of gendered processes of literary representation: the links between masculinity and the doxa, the equation of writing and power, the homosocial function of acts of narration, and the masculinity of authorship and authority."